Wednesday, June 13, 2018

What some South Koreans think ...


After all, Koreans are the ones in the immediate line of fire. They are the ones who have been separated from kinfolk for nearly 70 years.

According to E. Tammy Kim, writing from Seoul for the New Yorker:

Koreans see the Singapore summit not just as another sensational episode in the story of Donald Trump but as a step away from a sixty-eight-year-old unfinished war. In South Korea, in all but the most reactionary circles, there is a sense of ethnic solidarity with the North and some longing for unity. Support for President Moon, who is seen widely as the catalyst for this sudden thaw of relations between North Korea and the world, remains high. (Local elections, though overshadowed by the summit, take place on Wednesday in South Korea. Support for Moon’s party, generally, has also remained high, and voters will have a chance to express their confidence at the ballot box.) I’ve yet to meet a single Korean who isn’t willing to express optimism, in some form, about the prospects for peace and reunification. ...

... Lee Soo-jung, an anthropologist at Duksung Women’s University, acknowledged the painful “historical irony” of benefitting from Trump. In a fairer world, she tells me, “The citizens of the world would be able to vote for the U.S. President.” ...

... After the summit, [South Korean President Moon Jae-in] issued a short statement congratulating the U.S. and North Korea on a “successful” and “historic” meeting, praising Trump for his initiative and promising to work toward inter-Korean peace. South Koreans do not trust Kim or Trump, or believe in the possibility of a quick reunification. They are simply aware of the toll that seventy years of national division have taken, and are eager for an alternative future.

How many people around the world must have felt that they, too, deserved to have the chance to vote on U.S. presidents -- since the North American elephant might crush the life out of them with an accidental or unconsidered misstep?

3 comments:

Rain Trueax said...

That was insane to suggest the world should get to vote in our Presidency especially given how the paranoid left is now sure the Russians did influence it lol. Seriously, what intellectual elites say surprises me. So we should have voted on Brexit and who leads France. We don't even get enough people voting here. We need to do what Australia does-- make voting mandatory for citizens and fine anyone who doesn't. After the way the DNC rigged its primary, I think even more folks have wondered why bother.

janinsanfran said...

Rain, I'm surprised you don't recognize irony. As people around the world have too long known, America sneezes and they catch pneumonia. We blunder about thinking we can dispose of other people's countries and other people's lives. Of course they can't vote here, but our votes have tremendous impact on their very survival.

Rain Trueax said...

as does ours with theirs. No, guess I didn't see it as irony with all the ones mad at American voters who got us Trump. We all are impacted by other nations like the Middle East, Central America, etc. etc. The world is too connected to not recognize the problems but I think the US does less damage to others than some think. Most of what we do, we thought it was for good-- although it's hard to see how anybody saw Iran/Contra as about anything but our selfish interests.

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